Grain of Lanthanum (for Father's Day)


On the last day of spring (already sultry
as July) I would make a little summa-
testament, for summer. As you crumble
a humble clod of earth, in memory

of your local Rome (marking its boundary)
or walk with weatherbeaten gardener around
the blackened iron fence of some New England
family plot - as you linger in the shade there

where uncut grass of tumbling gravestones
marks the locus tribes & nations meet
at end of time - all that sown wheat
of long-gone fathers (embattled Blackstones,

Lincolns, Washingtons) - there
where covenants of every hamlet find
their mirror in a lightning eye-in-hand,
primordial - you'll hear the thunder,

finally - a voice inside the thunder.
& it will be only wheat... rustling out of
the chest of that familiar gardener (whose step
you keep). The voice of your own, your only father,

gentle & kind; the voice you've forgotten
& never forget
. Coming back out of the grass
as Lazarus, or Berryman - for those almond eyes
(light brown) that call him from oasis-grotto -

from the wide wave of Union, everlasting.
Like silkworm shrouded in its tomb... like that
butterfly - a monarch-outline, light & sweet
but yellow-black - the plowman's pilot, floating


6.20.10 (Father's Day)